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J Agric Food Chem. 2003 Oct 8;51(21):6248-55.

Phenolic compounds and fatty acids from acorns (Quercus spp.), the main dietary constituent of free-ranged Iberian pigs.

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Research Group on Quality, Safety and Bioactivity of Plant Foods, Department of Food Science and Technology, CEBAS-CSIC, P.O. Box 164, Murcia 30100, Spain.


The aim of the present work was to identify and quantify the phenolic compounds and fatty acids in acorns from Quercus ilex, Quercus rotundifolia, and Quercus suber. The concentration of oleic acid was >63% of total fatty acids in all cases, followed by palmitic and linoleic acids at similar concentrations (12-20%). The concentrations of alpha-tocopherol in Q. rotundifolia, Q. ilex, and Q. suber were 19, 31, and 38 mg/kg of dry matter (DM), respectively, whereas the concentrations of gamma-tocopherol were 113, 66, and 74 mg/kg of DM, respectively. Thirty-two different phenolic compounds were distinguished. All of them were gallic acid derivatives, in the form of either galloyl esters of glucose, combinations of galloyl and hexahydroxydiphenoyl esters of glucose, tergallic O- or C-glucosides, or ellagic acid derivatives. Several tergallic acid C-glucosides were also present in the extracts obtained from Q. suber. Acorns from Q. ilex and Q. rotundifolia showed similar polyphenol patterns mainly with gallic acid-like spectra. Chromatograms of Q. suber showed mainly polyphenols with ellagic acid-like spectra. Valoneic acid dilactone was especially abundant in Q. suber skin. The contribution of skin to the total phenolics of the acorn was relatively small in Q. rotundifolia and Q. ilex but relatively high in Q. suber. Skin extracts from Q. suber, Q. rotundifolia, and Q. ilex showed 1.3, 1.4, and 1.0 antioxidant efficiencies, respectively (compared to that of butylhydroxyanisole). Endosperm extracts showed lower capacity to prevent lipid peroxidation than skin extracts.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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